FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 12, 2012
UNIQUE PARTNERSHIP TAKES AIM AT SUPPORTING MILITARY FAMILIES
(Columbia, SC) Tuesday the Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA) and the Forestry Commission made a $750.00 donation to the SC National Guard’s Family Readiness Group.
QDMA raised the funds through auctions of hunting trips hosted at the Forestry Commission’s Niederhof Forestry Center in Jasper County. A three-day deer hunt November 7-9 raised the funds presented in the form of an over-sized check today at the National Guard Armory on Bluff Road in Columbia.
The hunts, which are on-going, help soldiers returning from high stress assignments overseas to relax and acclimate to stateside life again through recreation. The Forestry Commission hosts these hunts as part its outreach and education efforts. They allow SCFC to show appreciation to the military while simultaneously sharing our message about the importance of forestry and the importance of partnering with conservation organizations like QDMA and the National Wild Turkey Federation.
Captain Chad Bryant, who accepted the check on behalf of the Family Readiness Group (FRG), said the opportunity to unwind after arduous duty helps soldiers relate better to their families, colleagues and even themselves, “These hunting trips help in the transition. Time in a deer stand is time to think. And time to help the soul.”
FRGs are officially command-sponsored organizations of family members, volunteers, and soldiers belonging to a unit, that together provide an avenue of mutual support and assistance, and a network of communications among the family members, the chain of command, and community resources.
State Forester Henry E. Kodama, presented the check along with Kevin Graves, Carolinas Regional Director of QDMA. For Kodama, partnering with QDMA is a way to celebrate the state’s forest resources while showing soldiers some appreciation for their service.
“We all recognize that the freedom to do what we do and live the life we live doesn’t come free. If we can show members of our armed services our appreciation, then we’ve returned just a little bit of what they’ve given us,” Kodama said.
Quality Deer Management Association is a national non-profit wildlife conservation organization dedicated to ensuring the future of white-tailed deer. Their partnership with the Forestry Commission ensures a sustainable approach to wildlife management on properties belonging to the Commission.
Forestry and related industries are the largest manufacturing sector of our state’s economy in terms of the number of jobs provided and salaries paid. Forest industry has a $17 billion impact on the South Carolina economy annually.
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For more information, call Scott Hawkins, (803) 896-8820
Photo caption: QDMA and SCFC officials present donation to SC National Guard’s Family Readiness Group at Bluff Rd. Armory in Columbia (Pictured left to right: Tasha Bachelder, FRG; 1st Sgt. Michael Montrose; Kevin Graves, QDMA; Everett McMillan, QDMA; Capt. Chad Bryant; Henry E. Kodama, SCFC State Forester; Col. Ronald Taylor; Jamie Harris, FRG
SC Forest-related businesses have a $17 billion annual impact on our economy.
For every $1.00 invested by the state in its Forestry Commission, forest industry produces about $1,200.00 of economic impact.